5 Dental New Year’s Resolutions

Here are five simple dental resolutions that will change your oral health for the better! Let 2015 be your best year yet for taking care of your mouth.

1. Twice a day, for two minutes: The recommended time and frequency of brushing your teeth is twice a day for two minutes. Two minutes may not seem like a long time but studies show the average person brushes their teeth for less than 45 seconds. You can make brushing last longer by setting a timer, using your free hand to tidy up the bathroom counter or going to a little walk around the room.

2. Floss once a day: OK. So we understand for some people this sounds impossible. Start small and work your way up. Begin flossing twice a week for the month of January. Then in February floss three times a week. March will be four, etc. By June you’ll be a flossing machine! Your gums and hygienist will thank you for it!

3. Have regular dental check ups: Dentists recommend a minimum of 2 visits per year. Some patients, such as those with periodontal disease or patients who build up calculus more quickly or have trouble with home care, may need to be seen 3 or 4 times a year.

4. Reduce your intake of foods and drinks that harm your teeth. Acidic food such as soda, fruit juice, wine, sports drinks, tomatoes, cranberries, oranges and cherries can erode the enamel on teeth. Also, reduce foods that cause cavities such as sticky sugary foods and drinks. Use ADA approved fluoridated toothpaste to help prevent cavities caused by these foods.

5. Stop bad habits before they cause harm: Whether we realize it or not little things we do to our teeth can cause erosion, abrasion and even fracturing or chipping. A few examples of these things are chewing on pens/pencils/paper clips, using teeth to open plastic packages, chewing on ice and holding sewing needles with your teeth. All of these practices can cause damage to teeth that could require a trip to the dental office.

There you have it! Five easy changes to make for 2015 for your best oral health yet! Have a Happy New Year from Urbandale Family Dentistry!

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